Coca-Cola bottling plant in Okmulgee expects to close in March
Hundreds of Coca-Cola employees, including many in Okmulgee will be looking for new jobs.
This after Coca-Cola Southwest Beverages announced it will be closing its bottling plant in Okmulgee and consolidating operations with its Oklahoma City bottling facility.
In a statement, the company says their distribution facility in Okmulgee will remain open.
"We are closing the manufacturing operations in Okmulgee, our Okmulgee distribution center’s frontline salespeople, drivers and merchandisers are not impacted. While difficult, these changes are helping us create a faster, leaner and more agile organization to accelerate growth in the local marketplace. We do not take decisions about job impacts lightly and are committed to treating our people with dignity, fairness and respect throughout this process," stated a company press release.
In all, 246 jobs in both bottling plants will be affected.
The company says the job reductions were necessary.
Okmulgee City Manager Roger Ballenger said that it will set the city back some, but they are always working to get new jobs here for Okmulgee. He said it will affect the city indirectly through sales tax through people who work at the plant and purchase within the city.
"It is a blow to Okmulgee, but we will survive," said Ballenger. "It will affect our revenue on water sales because they are a major water purchaser. At the same time this will open up resourses to other companies. We have plenty of water, but their is always a limit."
The Coca-Cola company says the consolidation will happen beginning in March.
The company has always been a huge financial supporter of the City's annual fireworks show for the citizens.